As the Seward Highway winds slowly south from Anchorage, about 171 miles from Seward, a west-southwestern detour along the Sterling Highway continues a journey through spruce-covered forests and striking mountain vistas. Soon, and no doubt inspired, you drift by Kenai Lake and into the small town of Homer, where a greater dose of nature and abundant fishing await. Homer honors local natural wonders through tours and hikes sponsored by Wynn Nature Center, and interactive displays and experiences with marine life and shore birds at Alaska Islands & Ocean Visitor Center. Rated one of the “Best 100 Art Towns”, Homer presents moving productions by local artists at Pratt Museum and many other galleries, as well as a vibrant coffeehouse and bar culture featuring popular writers and poets. All of this only complements the scenery outside, where glimpses of moose, eagles, and whales are only the tip of the iceberg – many of which, by the way, lurk glimmering just offshore, along with glaciers, volcanoes, and snow-tipped mountains.
Getting to Homer is easy, comfortable, and quite inspiring whether you come by auto, bus, boat, or air. Those choosing to arrive quickly and take in the scenery later may prefer to fly. Flights from Anchorage and Seward are short and provide outstanding aerial vantage of the entire region. Ferries and cruises along the Alaska Marine Highway make Homer one of the most popular ports of call for those heartier souls on the way to Kodiak and Dutch Harbor. This is a breathtaking way to slowly soak in the southwest side of the glorious Kenai Peninsula. Charters and guides help make fishing in Homer fun and exciting for adults and kids alike, easing the challenge of pulling monsters out one after another. In addition to “Barn Door” Halibut passing 300 pounds, there are also great stores of Dolly Varden, Steelhead, Ling Cod, Rockfish, and more – all waiting for you in Homer’s crystal blue waters. With the proper license and a Derby Ticket you can drop your own boat from the harbor, and go out on your own; possibly win more than pride with a big enough trophy. Full-day, half-day, and overnight charter trips are all available; you can even fly-in, or out, to the best fishing spots in no time at all. Any extra time taken getting to a good location is well spent, however, surrounded by such striking wilderness and nature. During your return, this time can help ease muscles overworked from battling and landing such large and stubborn fish, while also replenishing body and mind with healthy attitude and spirit.
Homer’s location and access give it much more value as a tourist destination, in addition to its reputation as the “Sport Halibut Fishing Capital of the World”. A beautiful locale with gorgeous views of surrounding natural geography encompasses the town itself, and its friendly artistic culture. You may feel overwhelmed during the journey into town, but once you get here, it’s easy to see that may be only a taste of things to come. Exciting fishing opportunities can lead to further untold rewards for the entire family, body and psyche.